History

1981 - 1990

Sept. 1981 SOFTBANK Corp. Japan (Yombancho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo) established. Commenced operations as a distributor of packaged software.
May 1982 Entered publishing business, launching Oh! PC and Oh! MZ, monthly magazines introducing PCs and software by manufacturer.
July 1990 Changed trade name to SoftBank Corp.

1991 - 2000

Jan. 1992 Established SoftVenture Capital Co., Ltd. (currently SBI Holdings, Inc.)
Mar. 1994 Established SoftBank Holdings Inc. in the U.S. to gather information on Internet-related companies with a view to strategic investment.
July 1994 Registered with Japan Securities Dealers Association.
Dec. 1994 Acquired events division from Ziff Communications Company of the U.S through SoftBank Holdings Inc.
Apr. 1995 Acquired interests in Technology Events Division of the Interface Group in the U.S., which was operating COMDEX, the world's largest PC fair.
Jan. 1996 Established Yahoo Japan Corporation through joint investment with Yahoo! Inc. in the U.S.
Feb. 1996 Acquired Ziff-Davis Publishing Company, U.S. publisher of PC WEEK magazine, provider of leading-edge information on the PC industry, through SoftBank Holdings Inc.
Apr. 1996 Acquired additional shares of Yahoo Inc. (U.S.) through SoftBank Holdings Inc. (U.S.) and became its primary shareholder.*1
May 1996 Relocated corporate headquarters to Nihonbashi-hakozakicho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo.
June 1996 Formed a partnership with The News Corporation Limited, an Australian company, in JSkyB (currently SKY PerfecTV!), a digital satellite broadcasting business.*2
Nov. 1997 Yahoo Japan Corporation registered with Jasdaq Securities Exchange (currently Tokyo Securities Exchange JASDAQ Standard).*3
Jan. 1998 SoftBank Corp. listed on the First Section of Tokyo Stock Exchange.
June 1998 Established E*TRADE Japan KK with joint investment from E*TRADE Group, Inc. in the U.S. (currently E*TRADE Financial Corporation).*4
Dec. 1998 Established SoftBank America Inc. (U.S.)
Apr. 1999 Spun off the publishing business into a separate company and introduced the holding company system.
June 1999 Agreed with the National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc. to establish the Nasdaq Japan Market (currently JASDAQ).
July 1999 SoftBank Technology Corp. registered with Japan Securities Dealers Association (currently JASDAQ).
Oct. 1999 Converted to pure a holding company.
Apr. 2000 Introduced the management company system in each business segment.
Aug. 2000 Vector Inc. listed on NASDAQ Japan (currently JASDAQ).
Sept. 2000 Invested in the Nippon Credit Bank, Limited. (currently Aozora Bank, Ltd.)
Dec. 2000 SOFTBANK INVESTMENT CORPORATION listed on NASDAQ Japan (currently JASDAQ).

2001 - 2010

Sept. 2001 BB Technologies Corporation (currently SoftBank BB Corp.) launched commercial service of Yahoo! BB comprehensive broadband service.
Feb. 2002 SOFTBANK INVESTMENT CORPORATION listed on the First Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange.
Apr. 2002 Announced donation of broadband infrastructure and related services to schools, libraries and other public facilities throughout Japan to promote the e-Japan strategy by the government.
Launched full-scale demonstration experiments of Yahoo! BB Mobile, an ultra-high-speed wireless Internet access service.
BB Technologies Corporation (currently SoftBank BB Corp.) launched commercial IP telephony service BB Phone.
Jan. 2003 Merged BB Technologies Corporation, SOFTBANK Networks Inc., SOFTBANK EC HOLDINGS CORP. and SOFTBANK COMMERCE CORP. to form SoftBank BB Corp.
July 2003 SoftBank BB Corp. established the Broadband Association to provide a forum for interaction among companies in various industries and conduct promotional and educational activities concerning broadband.
Sept. 2003 Sold all shares of Aozora Bank, Ltd. to Cerberus NCB Acquisition, LP.
Oct. 2003 Yahoo Japan Corporation listed on the First Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange.
Nov. 2003 Decided to offer Yahoo! BB in Hachijojima in Tokyo, as part of measures to bridge the digital divide caused by geographical constraints.
Dec. 2003 SoftBank BB Corp. launched a service using the 050 number for BB Phone.
Jan. 2004 An attempted extortion occurred relating to customer information of SoftBank BB Corp.
Mar. 2004 SoftBank BB Corp. established the Privacy Management Advisory Board and the Technical Advisory Board.
July 2004 Acquired shares of JAPAN TELECOM CO., LTD (currently SoftBank Telecom Corp.), converted company to subsidiary, and entered fixed-line telecommunications business.
Oct. 2004 SoftBank BB Corp. and Yahoo Japan Corporation announced the launch of Yahoo! BB hikari, a new comprehensive broadband service using optic-fibers.
SoftBank BB Corp. used Ms Aya Ueto as its new promotion talent.
SoftBank BB Corp. filed a lawsuit demanding the suspension of “Draft Plan for IMT-2000 Frequency Allocation in the 800MHz Frequency Band” by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.
Dec. 2004 Decided the SoftBank Group's new logo based on the corporate identity.
Decided the name of the new professional baseball team as Fukuoka SoftBank HAWKS, a change from Fukuoka Daiei Hawks.
JAPAN TELECOM CO., LTD (currently SoftBank Telecom Corp.) launched OTOKU Line direct connection fixed-line voice service.
SoftBank Technology Corp. listed on the Second Section of Tokyo Stock Exchange.
Jan. 2005 Acquired shares of Fukuoka Daiei Hawks Corp. (currently Fukuoka SoftBank HAWKS Corp.) and converted company to subsidiary.
Feb. 2005 Made Cable & Wireless IDC Inc. its subsidiary. (Cable & Wireless IDC Inc. merged with Yahoo Japan Corporation in February, 2009, with Yahoo Japan Corporation as the surviving entity.)
Mar. 2005 Relocated corporate headquarters to Higashi-Shimbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo.
GungHo Online Entertainment, Inc. listed on the OSE, Hercules Market (currently JASDAQ).
Apr. 2005 BB Mobile Corp. obtained a license for experiment stations of 1.7GHz from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.
May 2005 BB Mobile Corp. obtained a license for W-CDMA experiment stations of 1.7GHz from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. Started demonstration experiments of the method.
Aug. 2005 Basic agreement reached with Alibaba.com Corporation (China) (currently Alibaba Group Holding Limited), and Yahoo! Inc. (U.S) to establish a strategic partnership in China.
Dec. 2005 Started operation of TV BANK CORPORATION through a joint investment with Yahoo Japan Corporation.
Revised SoftBank Group Charter in accordance with reinforcement of the governance and compliance system of the SoftBank Group.
Mar. 2006 Agreed with Vodafone Group Plc (UK) on acquisition of Vodafone K.K.
SoftBank Technology Corp. listed on the First Section of Tokyo Stock Exchange.
Apr. 2006 Acquired shares of Vodafone K.K. (currently SoftBank Mobile Corp.) through public tender offer, converted company to subsidiary, thereby entering the mobile communications business.
May 2006 Vodafone K.K. (currently SoftBank Mobile Corp.) launched first AQUOS mobile phone, Vodafone 905SH.
Aug. 2006 Sold all shares of SBI HOLDINGS, INC.
Sept. 2006 Vodafone K.K. (currently SoftBank Mobile Corp.) launched installment sales of devices (Super Bonus).*5
Oct. 2006 Changed the information of business attribution of the SoftBank Corp. on the Tokyo Stock Exchange to transportation and information communications.
Company name of JAPAN TELECOM., LTD. changed to SoftBank Telecom Corp.
Company name of Vodafone K.K. changed to SoftBank Mobile Corp.
Jan. 2007 SoftBank Mobile Corp. announced White Plan, a new price plan for mobile communications services.
Feb. 2007 SOFTBANK Players Corp. (currently SB Players Corp.) established Odds Park Banei Management Corp. an entrusted company of Banei Horse Racing operation.
Apr. 2007 Japan Cyber Educational Institute, Ltd. (currently Cyber University Inc.) opened Cyber University.
ITmedia Inc. listed on the Mothers Section of Tokyo Stock Exchange.
June 2007 Carview Corporation listed on the Mothers Section of Tokyo Stock Exchange.
Nov. 2007 SoftBank BB Corp. (currently SoftBank Commerce & Service Corp. following company split) launched SoftBank SELECTION to sell products such as accessories for mobile phones and software for PC.
Apr. 2008 Invested in Oak Pacific Interactive (China) (currently Renren Inc.), an operating company of one of the biggest SNS site in China, Ren Ren.
May 2008 Made Alibaba.com Japan its joint venture and started operation in a full-fledged manner.
June 2008 SoftBank BB Corp. and SoftBank Mobile Corp. launched White Call 24, service to provide free domestic calls for all day between SoftBank mobile phone and BB Phone, an IP phone.
SoftBank Telecom Corp. and SoftBank Mobile Corp. started providing White Line 24, an FMC service for corporate users.
July 2008 SoftBank Mobile Corp. released iPhone 3G.
Mar. 2009 SoftBank Telecom Corp. and SoftBank Mobile Corp. launched White Office, an FMC service for corporate users.
Apr. 2009 SoftBank Mobile Corp., SoftBank BB Corp. and SoftBank Telecom Corp. unified their service brand logo.
Mar. 2010 Executed Framework Agreement on the Revitalization of WILLCOM, Inc. (currently Ymobile Corporation)
SoftBank Mobile Corp. terminated the second generation mobile phone service.
May 2010 SoftBank Mobile Corp. released iPad.
Established a joint venture, Ustream Asia with Ustream, Inc. (U.S.)
June 2010 Unveiled “SoftBank's Next 30-Year Vision.”
July 2010 Launched SoftBank Academia.
Sept. 2010 Fukuoka SoftBank HAWKS won the 2010 Pacific League Championship of Professional Baseball.

2011 - to date

June 2011 The total cumulative subscribers of SoftBank Mobile Corp. and WILLCOM, Inc. (currently Ymobile Corporation) combined exceeded 30 million.
July 2011 Founded Renewable Energy Governors' Alliance with governors of local governments.
Sept. 2011 Invested in InMobi Pte. Ltd., a global Mobile Advertising Network headquartered in Singapore.
Oct. 2011 Established SB Energy Corp. to promote the increased adoption of renewable energy.
Established Bharti SoftBank Holdings Pte. Ltd jointly with Bharti Enterprises (India).
Nov. 2011 Fukuoka SoftBank HAWKS won the 2011 Japan Series Championship of Professional Baseball.
Feb. 2012 SoftBank Mobile Corp. launched SoftBank 4G, the industry's fastest*6 data communication service.
July 2012 SoftBank Mobile Corp. launched communication service using 900 MHz (Platinum Band).
Aug. 2012 The total cumulative subscribers of SoftBank Mobile Corp. exceeded 30 million.
Executed Framework Agreement on establishment of joint venture with Avex Group Holdings Inc.
Oct. 2012 Agreed with Sprint Nextel Corporation (U.S.) (currently Sprint Corporation) on strategic acquisition.
SoftBank Telecom Corp. launched Effective Customer-Leads Platform for O2O service jointly with Yahoo Japan Corporation.
Dec. 2012 Established Nihon PayPal KK jointly with PayPal Pte. Ltd. (U.S.)
Jan. 2013 SoftBank Corp. completed share exchange with eAccess Ltd. (currently Ymobile Corporation) and made it a subsidiary.
Mar. 2013 SoftBank Mobile Corp. launched Double LTE service utilizing 1.7GHz spectrum owned by eAccess Ltd. (currently Ymobile Corporation)
May 2013 Bloom Energy Japan Limited established to provide clean and reliable distributed baseload power.
Apr. 2013 Consolidated GungHo Online Entertainment, Inc.
July 2013 WILLCOM, Inc. (currently Ymobile Corporation) made a subsidiary following the termination of rehabilitation proceedings.
Sprint Nextel Corporation (U.S.) (currently Sprint Corporation) made a subsidiary.
Sept. 2013 SoftBank Group established new Silicon Valley office in U.S.
SoftBank Mobile Corp. launched Japan's first LTE global roaming service.
Oct. 2013 Yahoo Japan Corporation announced new “e-Commerce Revolution” strategy with no tenant fees for Yahoo! Shopping and YAHUOKU!
SoftBank Corp. and GungHo Online Entertainment, Inc. jointly entered agreement with Supercell Oy (Finland) to jointly acquire its shares.
Jan. 2014 Brightstar Corp. (U.S.) shares acquired and made a subsidiary.
Apr. 2014 Commerce & Service Business of SoftBank BB Corp. split out to form new company, SoftBank Commerce & Service Corp.
June 2014 eAccess Ltd. and WILLCOM Inc. merged, with eAccess the surviving company.
SoftBank Mobile Corp. and ALDEBARAN Robotics SAS announced Pepper – the world's first personal robot that reads emotions.
July 2014 eAccess Ltd. changed company name (trade name) to Ymobile Corporation.
SoftBank Telecom Corp. and SB Power Corp. began power retail business for corporate customers.
Aug. 2014 Ymobile Corporation launched mobile communication services under the new Y!mobile brand
Sept. 2014 Alibaba Group Holding Limited lists on the New York Stock Exchange.
Oct. 2014 US-based SoftBank Internet and Media, Inc. announced investment in US-based Legendary Entertainment.
US-based SoftBank Internet and Media, Inc. announced investment in US-based DramaFever.
US-based SoftBank Internet and Media, Inc. announced investment by itself SoftBank Corp. and others in Indonesia's PT Tokopedia.
US-based SoftBank Internet and Media, Inc. announced its lead of investment in India's ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd. (Ola).
US-based SoftBank Internet and Media, Inc. announced SoftBank Group investment in India's Snapdeal.
Fukuoka SoftBank HAWKS won 2014 SMBC Japan Series.
Dec. 2014 US-based SoftBank Internet Media, Inc. announced SoftBank Group investment in Singapore's GrabTaxi Holdings Pte. Ltd.
US-based SoftBank Internet Media, Inc. announced SoftBank Group investment in India's Locon Solutions Pvt. Ltd. (Housing.com).
Jan. 2015 US-based SoftBank Internet Media, Inc. announced investment by SoftBank Corp., Alibaba Group Holding Limited and others in China's Travice Inc. (KuaiDi).
[Notes]
  • *1
    As of March 31, 2014 the Company holds less than 0.1% of Yahoo! Inc.'s voting rights.
  • *2
    In 1998, Japan SKY Broadcasting Co., Ltd. merged with Japan Digital Broadcast Service Co., Ltd. (currently SKY Perfect JSAT Corporation).
  • *3
    Yahoo Japan was listed on the First Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange in October 2003 and on the JASDAQ market in February 2007.
  • *4
    E*TRADE Japan KK merged with SOFTBANK INVESTMENT CORPORATION (currently SBI Holdings Inc.) in June 2003.
  • *5
    For new price plans such as White Plan, the New Super Bonus is currently available.
  • *6
    Among mobile data communication services being offered in Japan as of May 29, 2012, based on published data from other companies and industry standard values. Communication speed is subject to the specification of devices.
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  • The names of companies, services and the contents abovementioned are as of the date when announced.